Where Are You, MK?

New Orleans is sinking
And this time
is going down.

The perfect white and crisp
is all I can recall of those nights,
those nights suspended
two lives at least
two worlds at least
when worlds and words were so
much closer and so
much further than they are

Mix tapes
Is how it began
Mix tapes
Is how old
we are, we were, we will
Suspended forever
in those nights I no longer

And now he leaves us.

I see it, familiar as now I am,
making its way down the sharp
lines of his face, peeking beneath
the ashen fedora.

I see it.
I see it.

And unbidden it rises
Our last conversation
The last time I
your voice.

“It’s a tumor.  There’s a tumor.  I
have a tumor.”

Are you there now?  Watching him
scream Goodbye?  Are you there now
in Kingston?  Standing in your own
tears, wife by your side?

“I owe it to her.  If this is what it
is, I owe it.  To her.  To stay.”

He walks like the old man he will
never be.  And I whisper as they
scream, “One more — please — just
one more”.  Because he is singing
Goodbye with twenty years ago.

Twenty years

When we were both tied
to others.  When you said,
“No dress rehearsal, baby.
This is Our Life.”

The oracle says you live.
Sound bytes that are not
flow from your mouth, your
pen, your keyboard, just as
they did, just as I

when we did not know,
how could we know,
we were ahead by a century
ahead by a century
by a century.








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